American Studies

Requirements & Courses

  • Minor Requirements
    1. Total credits: 30. No more than eight credits that have been applied toward another major or minor may be applied to the AMS minor.
    2. Core: 22 credits. Each student must take AMS 101, 102 and 301, plus four courses from the following list (no more than one course per department): ECN 201; ENG 260 or 261; HST 104, 105, 180A or 228; POL 101; and SOA 101.
    3. Advanced electives: eight credits. Each student must take two courses from the following list (no more than one course per department): ART 250; ENG 361 or 366; HST 277, 323, 325, or 326; POL 231, 325 or 336; and SOA 241 or 380A; or other approved (with substantial American content) topics courses (e.g., African American literature or religion, Native-American literature, etc.) AMS independent study or practicum subject to approval of the AMS coordinator.

Courses

  • AMS
    101
    .
    Introduction to American Studies
    2
    Focuses on the multi-disciplinary perspectives needed to understand the complexity of “the American experience(s).” (Open only to freshmen and sophomores.)
  • AMS
    102
    .
    Perspective American Experience
    2
    Focuses on seminal sources for deepening one’s perspectives on “America.” (Open only to freshmen and sophomores.)
  • AMS
    *
    301
    .
    American Studies Seminar
    2-4
    AMS 101 and 102
    Open only to students who have completed or are concurrently enrolled in the completion of 24 credits toward the AMS minor.
  • ART
    *
    250
    .
    Contemporary Art in New York
    4
    Introduction to the major artistic movements and critical theory in the last two decades. Students spend eight days in New York City exploring galleries, museums and artists’ studios. Seminar includes readings, discussion and a research paper on a special topic. Requires instructor permission. Course fee.
  • ECN
    201
    .
    Principles of Macroeconomics
    4
    Introductory survey of macroeconomic theory and national policy. Supply and demand analysis and solutions to basic economic problem of scarcity in the American economy. Examines relationship between national income and its determinants with emphasis on role of fiscal and monetary policies in stabilizing national economic performance.
  • ENG
    *
    260
    .
    Survey of American Literature I
    4
    ENG-101, 120, 201 or 202
    Analyzing American literature from its beginnings to the Civil War, including the Puritan and Romantic periods.
  • ENG
    *
    261
    .
    Survey of American Literature II
    4
    ENG-101, 120, 201 or 202
    Examining American literature from the Civil War and the Realistic movement to the present.
  • ENG
    *
    361
    .
    Modern American Writers to 1865
    4
    Two courses in literature
    Examines in depth selected writers from the Revolution to the Civil War, with a special focus on the struggle to define an “American” literature. Includes such authors as Brown, Irving, Poe, Douglass, Jacobs, Dickinson, Melville, Hawthorne, Whitman and Stowe.
  • ENG
    *
    366
    .
    Modern American Literature
    4
    Two courses in literature
    Studies of American literature from post-WWII to the present.
  • HST
    104
    .
    The Making of America to 1877
    4
    Examines American history from colonial times to Reconstruction; concentration on political, constitutional, social, economic and intellectual problems. (ESPI/GP)
  • HST
    105
    .
    The American Century: 1877-Present
    4
    Political, economic, social and intellectual issues from Reconstruction to the present. Focuses on 1877-1990. (ESPITH/GP)
  • HST
    228
    .
    Immigration & Ethnicity in American Hist
    4
    Examination of the experiences of immigrants and their transformation into ethnic Americans during the 19th and 20th centuries. Discussion of what it means to be American and the diversity of American society in a historical perspective. (ESPI/GP)
  • HST
    277
    .
    Am Studies: Civil War & Reconstruction
    4
    Examines sectional crisis, disunion and reunion from 1845-77. Topics include significance of Civil War era for industrialization; agriculture and urbanization; emancipation of slaves and race relations; development of the Presidency; constitutional issues; and modern warfare. (ESPI)
  • HST
    *
    323
    .
    Creating the Republic, 1763-1815
    4
    Sophomore Standing, and one history course or Permission
    Analysis of selected economic, social, political and intellectual issues, including the coming of the American Revolution; “state-building” during the war for Independence; the “Critical Period,” ratifying the Constitution; origins and early development of political parties, ideologies of republicanism and nationalism; diplomatic problems and territorial expansion; minorities in the early republic; and the War of 1812. (ESPI/GP)
  • HST
    *
    325
    .
    Reform & Search for Order
    4
    Sophomore Standing, and one history course or Permission
    Urban revolution; middle class reforms; response of industry, labor, and public institutions to the progressive era; World War I; the Jazz Age; the stock market crash of 1929; and the Hoover administration. (ESPITH)
  • HST
    *
    326
    .
    The Roosevelt Revolution, 1932-45
    4
    Sophomore Standing, and one history course or Permission
    Analysis of the Great Depression, the New Deal, American isolation in 1930s, and American involvement in World War II. Historical perspectives of the New Society which emerged from the Great Depression and World War II. (ESPITH/GP)
  • POL
    101
    .
    The American Political System
    4
    Study of institutions and processes of politics and government. Contemporary political problems. Primary focus on federal government with some attention to state and local politics.
  • POL
    *
    231
    .
    American Political Thought
    4
    Historical and contemporary meanings of democracy, its assumptions and implications: tensions between theory and practice, majority rule and minority rights, civil disobedience, economic-political democracy, institutionalization of democratic procedures, and the future of democracy.
  • POL
    *
    325
    .
    U.S. Foreign Policy
    4
    Study of goals of American foreign policy and U.S. role in changing world; structure, processes and politics of foreign policy-making; and U.S. foreign policy since end of WWII. Analysis of selected current U.S. foreign policy concerns.
  • SOA
    101
    .
    Principles of Sociology
    4
    Introduction to concepts and methods of sociology: society and its institutions, social and cultural change, and their implications. Prerequisite for all other Sociology courses except those in the Anthropology sequence. Computer laboratory; no prior computer experience required.
  • SOA
    *
    241
    .
    Race and Ethnic Relations
    4
    SOA-101
    Examines racism in American society; dominant-subordinate group relations with particular emphasis on African Americans, Native Americans, Latinos, Asian Americans and White Ethnics; political, economic, social and cultural consequences.